Underdog delivers a bike to Utah - Page 4 - Triumph675.Net Forums
Trip reports Been on tour? Tell everyone about it here. Old threads may later be moved to the regional forums.

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post #31 of 50 Old 06-16-17, 17:36 Thread Starter
The Underdog
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Up fairly early this morning at 6:30am for no particular reason. Leisurely prep session, breakfast, shower, and on the road by 9. Avoided highways and saw some neat stuff.

Found this turtle in the tall grass.

Saw a truck coming so I put him in the road.


Wait, it was the opposite actually.

Rode by a whole lot of nothing. Saw some abandoned stuff. Historical this and that.




Had lunch in Luvern, AL.



After a cool morning it warmed up and made me sleepy so 20 miles later I stopped by a lake for a nap and to write this, and the previous, post.


While I ride, I'm listening to an audio book, called "Flatland," which, so far, is about a race of geometric shapes living in a two dimensional world. The one before that was "The Simpsons and their Mathematical Secrets." The one before that was "The Nineteenth Wife" and was about Mormons.

I don't know where I'm trying to get to tonight. Just west somewhere. Opelousas, FL is tomorrow's goal. Got a guy there who used to rent a room from me. Still owes me a bunch of money. Like 4 grand. Maybe he'll give me some cash for the road. He actually gave me a hundred fifty bucks on the other trip, haha.

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post #32 of 50 Old 06-16-17, 22:28 Thread Starter
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The goal turned out to be Chatom, AL. There was an interesting looking motel there that I wanted to check out. I got within 5 miles of it and hit huge rain. Like zero visibility so I turned around and headed back looking for a place to wait it out.

Found this small barn thing, pulled in, and immediately sank in gravel.

Gravel was so deep I had to dig trenches in it to get the bike to move.

Worked at it for 20 minutes to get it turned around.

The heaviest of the rain and lightening has passed, now I'm just waiting on an opportunity to bolt for the hotel.


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post #33 of 50 Old 06-17-17, 01:28
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Safe travels Underdog. Looking forward to replying to this thread in depth soon. Super enjoying the day to day life and pictures.
That stone... do you know what year that was created?

This journey makes me want to go on for days and days just to explore.
@harcourt you ready for the mega trip we have been planning
Cashiers
The snake
Boone
All in a weekend!!
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post #34 of 50 Old 06-17-17, 17:03 Thread Starter
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The Guidestones were built in 1980, according to the blurb on the info thing.

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post #35 of 50 Old 06-17-17, 17:42 Thread Starter
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Today's lunch update comes after an extended morning of drudgery and self-induced bad luck.

I stayed in the room till 11 when the rain stopped falling. Looking at the radar I figured I could go around it to the north and that worked for about a half hour. Then it started raining so hard and fast that all I could do was put my wallet in a ziplock bag and embrace the drenching.

I was pretty close to Desoto National Forest so I figured I'd go through that for the sake of curvy roads and good scenery. However, the combination of rain and lack of phone signal had me kind of winging it. This next part is going to seem obviously stupid to all of you but, because of a combination of previous experiences, the situation at hand, and various other intangibles, I decided that it would be a decent idea to head through the biggest part of the forest on a dirt road right after a rain storm.

It was 536 running east/west and it started out wide, flat, and we'll packed with gravel that was tightly embedded in the dirt, which wasn't soft.

For a while the running was pretty good and then I had a minor fish-tail going up a hill that clued me in to slow down some.


After that things got better and worse and better and worse. There were lots of intersecting dirt roads, none of them really marked, none of them really on the map except mine, so I had to ride a bit and check to see if my dot was still on the road. I had no signal so I was afraid to zoom or pan lest I accidentally clear the map cache and have nothing.


Occasionally, there were these concrete bridges where I could stop and regain my wits.

The riding was just treacherous beyond my ability to describe. The ground was so soft and unstable that I couldn't really steer without getting into an immediate tank slapper, even at 20 mph. I had to constantly pay attention to even the slightest lateral slope in the road and make sure I wasn't climbing it too much or the wheels would slip down it and try to go out from under me. I couldn't really avoid holes or anything unless I had like 100 feet to gently change directions.

Fortunately, there were tire marks from some vehicle that had been there before, maybe days before, and the ground was slightly more packed there. It was the smallest difference but it was all I needed in places. It was so sketchy. Like I couldn't turn my head to look ad anything, couldn't look at the map while moving, and had to concentrate on keeping my weight centered above the tires. Yet, at the same time, I had to remember to stay loose and let the bike find its way and not over control it. Trying to guess how out of shape to let it get before trying to take action was mentally fatiguing and I got big slides on a bunch of times and was sure I was going to fall but, somehow, managed to ride it out each time. Probably 20 times. Until I ran out of luck and dumped it.

I was about a half mile from pavement after almost 20 miles of white knuckled concentration and came upon a down-hill section where heavy trucks had squashed all the gravel out of the road and taken it down to wet clay. I tried to center up and take it straight through, nice and neutral, but the surface was undulating and slick as bacon fat. I countered a couple of slides then it was ass-left full lock and my foot kicking the ground and I just lost it. The peg dug in, spun it around, and there I was. Heavy bike on its side in the mud in the middle of nowhere.

But, thanks to the tall sissy bar, I had a good place to grab and stand it up.


Nothing got broken, I don't think, and I was only moderately dirty. Only problem was that I was pointed the wrong way.

Considering the rest of the events, turning around wasn't that bad and maybe ten minutes later I was at the end.

Now I'm having some Sonic before heading to the car wash.


What a mess...

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post #36 of 50 Old 06-18-17, 23:04 Thread Starter
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After Sonic, I went to the carcass and hosed the mud off the bike and myself.

Ended up making it to Opelousas by 11 pm and met up with my old roommate Kemit.

I ended up sleeping most of the next day. Didn't really get up and around till the afternoon. It turns out Kemit is in a transitional period where he's starting his own business and I actually got to witness him make the phone call to his boss to give notice. I showed him the Shaia LeBouf "do it" video the previous day and it might have pushed him to go for it, haha. Interestingly, he's going to Houston for a gig in his new business and I'm catching a ride in his truck, bike and all.

As a side note, a club in his town got burned down and it had an ironic name so I got a picture.

Tomorrow, Houston.

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post #37 of 50 Old 06-21-17, 02:51 Thread Starter
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I've been in Houston a few days now and didn't think I was going to have much in the way of stuff to put in here. However, after spending part of the afternoon with Kemit (ex-roommate / guy that hauled the bike here) I arrived home just in time to get a call from him telling me there had been a shooting outside his hotel room.


Actual dead guy here.


We had been standing in the parking lot right near there talking about an hour before. Kinda crazy. I'm tired right now so my brain might not be working right but I don't feel much in the way of emotions about this. We'll see if that changes in the morning.

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post #38 of 50 Old 06-21-17, 11:52
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Awesome thread - big fan of your travels and writing style. If you're ever in/near Philadelphia and need tools/crashpad/etc., just send me a PM.

Be safe out there.

'07 Daytona 675
'14 Street Triple R
'08 TTR-125L

Ride at NJMP? I'll trade track days for parts. PM me if interested.
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post #39 of 50 Old 06-21-17, 21:59
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Holy shit. You should take a vacation.
I'm here to talk if you want/ need to recoup from your previous days struggles, adventures, and tragedy.
Damn Underdog. Just
Damn

Ride safe and smarter than yesterday my friend
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post #40 of 50 Old 06-27-17, 15:33 Thread Starter
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Still in Houston. Headed to Austin tomorrow so I figured it was time for an update.

On the shooting, I guess living in Baltimore has made me numb to such things. It's pretty much a murder or two a day out there and the news doesn't even cover all of them anymore. I pondered it a while but, by the next day, it wasn't in the front of my mind anymore.

Not much noteworthy has gone on here except visiting friends and family. Some folks are doing good, some folks are doing bad. I feel sorry for the unfortunate ones but, when they tell me their story, I realize that they got themselves into their little messes with their own patterns of behavior. Even if you pulled them out of their funk they'd find their way right back into it. It's sad but it's reality.

My folks are getting old but staying busy. At 80 and 74 they've outlived a lot of people. Won't be long, though. One of these days I won't be through here on a bike. It'll be in a rental car, wearing a suit, and handling paperwork. I'll cross that bridge when I get there, though. And then I'll be next up at bat.

Mom with one of her cats.

Me and dad on a ferris wheel.

Pigs at a pet store in the mall.


Probably the craziest thing besides the shooting is this one friend of mine who has a 9 year old McDonald's hamburger that looks almost like it did the day it was made.



No mold or anything. Like how is that even possible?

We'll see what Austin brings.

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